For many of us, church is our home away from home; a safe haven where we and fellow believers come together to lay down any burdens we’ve been carrying throughout the week, and lift up His name in praise for our successes and victories. This very much holds true for Rena Tyler, a faithful attendee of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas.
In fact, Rena does more than just show up to service every week – she’s a prayer minister within the church, a role that requires her to be seen and heard from by several members during the course of a day. And while the good book does instruct us to come as we are, our appearance can definitely be an important facet, especially when serving in a leadership role within the sanctuary.
For Rena, looking good was never an issue. Despite her thirty-five-year battle with alopecia, an incurable hair condition that causes sudden hair loss in circular bald patches, she found ways to manage her condition and wear her hair in a way that made her feel comfortable in public.
“My hairdresser would style my hair so that my longer strands would cover my bald patches, but this style would only last four days, if that,” Rena explained. “I spent over $100 going to the salon every week, but I didn’t mind. As long as my hair was nice and pretty for Sunday morning.”
However, it soon came to a point where that strategy was no longer effective. Rena began to receive comments from her church family, expressing concern about her health and why she was balding.*
To make matters worse, styling her hair to hide her bald spots was becoming much more of a time investment than Rena initially bargained for.
“It seemed that every time I went to my hairdresser, I had to wait on her to do my hair for five hours,” Rena complained. “ Finally, I said ‘this is for the birds. I am going to do something different. I am going natural!”
Then, one Sunday morning during her transitioning process, Rena was given a gift she felt couldn’t have been anything other than divine intervention.
“Two years ago, one of the prayer ministers that I serve with gave me a jar of Supercurl,” Rena said. “She’d recently chopped off all of her hair to the point where she was bald, but she grew it back to a nice length by using [UFD] products. So I thought, ‘why not try the product? it worked for her.’”
Then only six months into her transition, the timing for Rena could not have been better. Supercurl not only eased the process of becoming a naturalista, it completely changed her entire attitude towards her hair.
“Supercurl is amazing! Let’s say I was going to the grocery store and my hair got wet. All I would have to do is put some Supercurl on it, and my hair looks good,” Rena proclaimed. “I said to myself when I first started using it ‘Lord have mercy, whoever put this product on the market is amazing!’”
Rena has since expanded her use of UFD products. In addition to Supercurl, she also uses Richee Rich Moisturizing Conditioner, Rich & Funky Moisturizing Shampoo, Good Hair Conditioning Style Creme, and the fan favorite, Curly Magic Curl Stimulator.
“When I first started using Curly Magic, I thought ‘wow, this is amazing’. My hair just immediately curled.’” Rena boasted. “I also love that I don’t have to use a large amount of product when washing and styling my hair. All it takes is a little pump of each product, and I am good to go!”
Aside from making her look great, UFD products have greatly shortened and simplified her ready time in the morning.
“I wake up at 4 a.m. every morning to run my daycare, so I love that it only takes me seven minutes to do my hair,” Rena said. “I just brush my hair to the back, take my fingers through my hair, massage it a little and just like that my hair is ready.”
As Rena will certainly testify, there’s nothing quite like having your prayers answered in abundance. Despite her condition and the challenges that came with it, Rena never lost faith in her hair’s ability to look amazing, and she’s willing to share the story of her blessing with anyone who’s willing to listen.
“[UFD] has truly brought the best out of me. I love the products and its ingredients. They have helped my hair condition and allowed my hair to grow over my bald spots,” Rena said. “I tell my church members now when they compliment my hair, ‘Oh honey, this is all Uncle Funky’s Daughter’s work.’”